We came under the Golden Gate bridge around 4:30 on Thursday afternoon. Although they were absent from the rest of the passage, we had dolphins in pairs visiting us on and off for the hours preceding that cruise under the bridge. Between their escort, and the unbelievable weather (nearly windless, flat water, sunny- HOT- and clear) – it truly felt like a charmed arrival!
As if the conditions around us weren’t enough, there was a stunning synchronicity in our arrival and that of our children. They’ve been with my parents, a.k.a. Poppy and Plug, since we left Bainbridge on the 21st. They were flying to SF on Thursday, and we had expected before to have been in the Bay a couple of days before them- time to get cleaned up, rested, etc. What are the odds that they would fly into SF, get into a rental car, and drive to the waterfront JUST IN TIME to see us go by? I mean *really*?! With our big yellow kayak on the bow, the kids could pick out Totem right away. We could see them jumping and waving on the beach (click through to pictures on Flickr to see more). It was pretty sweet!
Looking back on the passage, it was charmed in many ways too. We had FANTASTIC crew in PJ and Curtis…good friends, great sailors, the kind of people who make getting up at 1am to sit watch in a chilly, bouncy cockpit desirable. I can’t say enough about them. The ride the last few days had some, well…exciting moments (gusts to 50 knots- yikes) but overall- we made good weather choices and had a terrific journey without any hiccups.
We’re settling into Marina Village, on Alameda- along the channel between Alameda island and Oakland. Our good friends Jim & Diana Jessie live on their boat, Nalu, just a few slips down- and have given us a hearty welcome. The children have been touring SF with my parents but join us today, and will be excited with our “front row” view of action in the channel from the end tie.
We’ll be here for at least a month and possibly a bit more. I’ll finish up work- commuting via ferry or BART to downtown San Francisco until the middle of the month, and Jamie will get to charge ahead on various boat projects. And of course, we want to milk all the time we can get with Jim, Diana, and other friends in the bay area before continuing south- who knows when we’ll have the chance again?
Meanwhile- we made the hometown newspaper on Bainbridge! They wrote this article about our plans. Kind of a surprise to see the photographer on the dock the day we took off…I might have put on a clean shirt had I known, but it’s fun to share something we’re so happy about doing. Apparently there were a couple of pictures, too, I’ll have to see what I can get sent down…this is a neat record for the kids, I think, and a fun way to share our adventures.